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Helical Levity PCB Badge

Helical Levity are a security research firm, working on the hardest problems in cyber security. Made up of world class designers, developers and security researchers, they’re able to offer a unique level of insight into the challenges the industry is facing; whilst continuing to push the boundaries of computer security research.

Helical Levity-logo

Helical Levity approached Cubik as they were looking to design a PCB “badge” for use at a cyber security conference in February 2018. The badge would require the attendees to collect several pieces of an encryption key, these were to be gathered by communicating with other attendees badges at the conference by pressing a button, before solving a variety of challenges across all areas of cyber security, with a prize to be won for the first to complete them all.

The “badge” was to be clipped to a neck-worn lanyard and was required to be interactive and communicate with others at the conference via infra-red data communications. A key element of the brief was to focus on the aesthetics of the badge, it specified the badge should be hexagon shaped with sides no smaller than 60mm and have working LED lights.

The event ran for two days so Cubik needed to ensure the battery would last this long. It was also important that the user was able to interact with the badge from a laptop or other device brought to the event.

A challenge for Cubik was the short time frame for when the badge should be delivered; given the finite timescale of the event. Cubik designed software to test the board and to use on the device for which a prototype was produced using an Arduino. This was then quickly modified into a design for a low volume production run (350 off) for the show to meet the deadline.

The badges were a tremendous success and added an element to the event that had not been seen before. Practitioners spanning the full breadth of cyber defence and incident response disciplines were engaged with the challenge and thoroughly enjoyed the hands-on activity the badge offered. After some serious competition a Digital Forensics Investigator was the first to hack the badge tweeting “Apparently there are talks at this event. Who knew?”. Cubik are very pleased to say that we are already working with Helical Levity on another project for an upcoming conference and are looking forward to continuing the relationship.

Helical Levity PCB Badge

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HiETA

Adrian Schmieder of HiETA commented: “Cubik’s quick turn-around of a functioning PCB has sped the delivery of the project and enabled me to focus on areas of the project in which HiETA has expertise.  The project is a great success and produced valuable information even from its first use.  I am very impressed with the support Cubik provided me throughout the project, from initial concept through to PCB delivery.  I will not hesitate to engage with them again as future PCB projects arise.”

Inductosense

Speaking about the collaboration between Inductosense and Cubik Innovation, Founder and CTO Dr Chenghuan Zhong (Bamboo) stated: "It was great working with the knowledgeable and experienced team at Cubik Innovation. They always provide full support as well as useful and thoughtful advice to us, helping us find solutions for really difficult problems."

Aquabar

Geoff Jones, Aquabar Inventor: "It was a pleasure to work with Cubik on our project. Paul and Sam understood the concept at one meeting, and produced a solution filling the brief within two weeks which has enabled us to find a potential partner. We will certainly use Cubik for our production units later in the year, Many thanks."

Plymouth University

Paul Davey, Associate Professor (SL) Plymouth University: "If you need a prototype developed to a high standard and on time you would be hard pushed to find someone better. They have highly trained, experienced engineers who get the job done."

Clean Energy Prospector Ltd

Damon Rand, Head Product Design: "Paul and the team have really helped us speed up the turnaround on our prototypes and assure the manufacturability of our designs. If you’re designing electronics in the South-West, then Cubik is a great choice for short-run manufacturing."

Cubik Innovation Ltd
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T: +44 (0)117 244 3000

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